Wagamama and TGI Fridays named among 'minimum wage dodgers'

Ivan Schwartz
March 10, 2018

Wagamama, Marriott Hotels and Shoe Zone are among 179 businesses that have been "named and shamed" by the government for failing to pay the minimum wage.

The club was named by the Government on a list of almost 180 employers for underpaying staff.

Thursday (UK) Limited, trading as TGI Friday's, Luton LU1, failed to pay £59,347.64 to 2,302 workers.

The government also fined the employers a total of £1.3 million in penalties.

Wagamama blamed what it described as an inadvertent misunderstanding of how the minimum wage regulations applied to uniforms, adding "as soon as we were made aware of this in 2016 we acted immediately to correct the position".

In Norfolk, the only company to be named on the list was SBDP1 Ltd, which runs the Coach House care home in Hemsby, which was found to have underpaid 67 staff a total of £2,275 - equivalent to £33.95 per worker - between January 31, 2011 and August 7, 2016.

On that date, the National Living Wage will go up from £7.50 to £7.83 per hour.

Business minister Andrew Griffiths said: 'There are no excuses for shortchanging workers.

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"These cases involving big name brands show that the issue is not so much that they are not paying the minimum hourly rate but that the business is not factoring in the impact of other obligations on wages - uniform costs being the most common thread here, but also some were incorrectly factoring in the costs of late night cabs and accommodation", she said.

Bryan Sanderson, Chairman of the Low Pay Commission, said: "As the National Living Wage and National Minimum Wage rates rise on 1 April, it is vital that workers understand their rights, and employers their obligations".

"All affected staff have been reimbursed".

'This is a historic payment which was paid past year, and we have since reimbursed team members for the purchase of their black uniform shoes'.

A TGI Fridays spokesperson said the firm had reimbursed team members for a shoe allowance.

Plaistow Broadway Filling Stations in Basildon is outed for underpaying one poor member of staff, and probably therefore its only member of staff, £535.53, with one hairdresser in Eastbourne somehow managing to underpay 78 workers the total of £427.40 - putting them in line for a life-changing lump sum of £5.47 each.

'We apologise to all our associates impacted by this error and have taken steps to ensure it can not happen again'.

Stoke City, which repaid £1,103 to seven workers, said the underpayment related to an historic practice of allowing staff to pay for tickets and club merchandise via deductions from their monthly salaries.

Other reports by GizPress

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